Jun 3, 2013


I am wildly inspired by how quickly and widely solidarity has grown with the protests in Turkey. 
As Koray Çalişkan, assistant professor of political science at a university in Istanbul, put it, speaking on Democracy Now! on Monday,
"Three days ago, 700 people gathered to protest this, and police gassed them. Next day, 7,000 people gathered in the same square, and the police gassed them. And on Saturday, 700,000 people came together, and then the police fled."
It started as a protest against the bulldozing of Gezi, a park in Istanbul, and has grown into a protest for freedom of expression and human rights.  One of my favorite explanations of how the protests grew, in both senses, is posted by an activist in the movement here.

The protests have been taken up across Turkey, (see the gorgeous shot of the protest at the waterfront in Izmir above) and there was even a re-occupation of zucotti park on wall street in solidarity! (see pic below)

But perhaps some of the most meaningful solidarity has been very intimate and small scale.  The government blocked the 3G network around Gezi to stop smart phones, so people and businesses around the square started posting their wifi codes so that people could use the internet to get images out.  Neighbours started putting out lemons and things to help folks affected by the tear gas (image below), and taking in people that were passing out from all the gas - apparently even some of the five star hotels around the square took people in. 

And now the union of public sector workers has declared a two day strike to protest the brutal crackdown on peaceful protests. May the solidarity keep growing! Keep spreading the word!

Here is a fabulous page to share, full of inspiring images.  

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